Former STASI Prisoner of Communist East Germany Shares Story with Students

Mario and Daniela

Mario Röllig and CPCC German Instructor Daniela Weinert

On Tuesday, April 26 seventy interested students listened to the presentation of the former Stasi Prisoner Mario Röllig at the Levine Campus. Mario grew up in the German Democratic Republic in the sixties. After he fell in love with a West German politician, the Ministry for State Security (Stasi) took notice of the gay 19-year-old East German and demanded that he become an informer. He refused and the Stasi subjected him to massive pressure. After trying to flee the country he was imprisoned in the Stasi Prison Hohenschönhausen in Berlin. Mr. Röllig shared his first-hand account of the GDR dictatorship, incarceration and human rights violations during the Cold War.

Mr. Röllig has made it his life’s mission to draw attention to the crimes of the GDR dictatorship to continue fighting Human Rights Abuse everywhere. Today Mr. Röllig gives tours and lectures at the Hohenschönhausen Memorial Museum, the site of his torture. Currently he is the CLAS Eyewitness in Residence at UNC Charlotte.

The event was organized by Levine Campus director Catalina Ramirez and German Discipline Chair Daniela Weinert whom Mario promised to stop by in fall 2017 to show a new documentary about his life.